Happy 4th From Washington DC

fourth of july

Go Independence Day!


But what does it mean?


We are independent from British rule since 1776.  


That made us a free nation.


We are free to be…but be what? 


1) Safe and Secure – Have a strong military, intelligence, and homeland security to keep the peace or compromise on national security and make bad deals for political expediency and face the consequences by a host of crazed terrorist threats, a nuclear Iran, a belligerent North Korea, a bellicose Russia, or a rising confrontational China. 


2) Prosperous And Self-Sufficient – Strengthen education, encourage innovation, invest in research and development and advanced manufacturing, cultivate a motivated and capable workforce, and manage a fiscally responsible economy or spend recklessly and indiscriminately driven by pork-barrel politics and special interests and eventually bankrupt our richly-endowed nation.


3) Equal And With Fundamental Human Rights – Ensure equality and opportunity for everyone under the law, where everyone has respect and dignity and the protection of basic human rights or discriminate in large and small ways perpetuating the have and have nots in every fiber of our society, where the rich get sickeningly richer and for everyone else you’re sh*t out of luck. 


4) Socially Just – Provide for a just and fair society ensuring that people are duly protected and crime does not pay or irresponsibly live in managed chaos and let violent criminals back out on the streets in a revolving door of recidivism rather than rehabilitation. 


5) Environmentally Responsible – Safeguard our environment and natural resources, invest in renewable energy resources and sustainability, reduce, reuse, and recycle, and give a hoot and don’t pollute or just pig out now and leave an inhospitable gutted world for later. 


6) Democratically Governed – Rule with righteousness and integrity, give back to the people, be open and honest, listen to all sides and ensure a balanced fair approach or perpetuate lies, deceit, corruption, conspiracy, fraud, waste, and abuse. 


Not everyone in the world is so lucky to be free.


Maybe this Independence Day, we think not just about the new Terminator movie, shopping at the mall, and feasting at the BBQ, but also what we want this treasured freedom to mean, what our “leaders” are leading us to, and are we getting the freedom we all, as human beings under G-d, innately deserve.


We can definitely raise the bar and we should. ;-)


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

18 Million–Change The SSNs

SSN

So, maybe one of the most detrimental hysts of information from the Federal government in history. 


Now involving over 18 million current and former federal employees, including military and intelligence personnel. 


No getting around it, but we are major screwed here–this is a treasure trove of personal and privacy information ready to use for identity theft, blackmail, assassination/decapitation attacks at home and work addresses, kidnapping of family members, and literally attacking our national security apparatus from the very inside out–it’s people. 


Imagine, if at the time of its choosing, an adversary attacks our nation, but preempts this with sophisticated and coordinated attacks on our critical government personnel–generals, spy masters, political kingpins, and other key decision makers–thereby distracting them from their duties of safeguarding our nation. 


This is our new Achilles Heel and overall a security disaster bar none!


Well, we can’t go back and put the genie back in the bottle–although wouldn’t it be nice if such critical information (if not encrypted–already unforgivable) would have a self-destruct mechanism on it that we could at least zap it dead.


But for the people whose personal identities are at risk–whose social security numbers (SSNs) and dates of birth (DOBs) have been compromised what can we do? 


While we can’t very well change people DOBs, why not at least issue them new SSNs to help thwart the adversaries peddling in this information in the black markets. 


If we can put a man on the moon, surely we can issue some 18 million new SSNs and mandate government and financial institutions to make the necessary updates to the records. 


This is not rocket science, and certainly we owe this much to our people to help protect them.


Will our government be there for it’s own employees and patriots? ;-)


(Source Photo: here with attribution to Donkey Hotey)

Hmm…A Nuke Deal With Iran–Just Ask Why?

iran burns flags

Here are 10 simple points any reasonable person would ask about a Nuke deal with Iran:


HATRED OF AMERICA–THEIR ENEMY #1:


1) Iran, of the Axis Of Evil, considers “The Great Satan” (as they call America) their “number one enemy”, they chant “Death to America,” and even hang our President in effigy.


MURDERING AND THREATENING TO RAIN DEATH AND DESTRUCTION ON AMERICANS:


2) Iran threatened brutal attacks on America as well as on the President’s family, and Iranian military documents endorse a devastating EMP attack on the United States

3) Iran says it will destroy the U.S. Navy, and destroyed a mock U.S. aircraft carrier in February!

4) Iran held our diplomats hostage for 444 days

5) Iran through it’s proxy Hezbolah killed 241 U.S. Marines in the Lebanon suicide attack.


DENYING THE HOLOCAUST AND THREATENING ANNIHILATION OF ISRAEL:


6) Iran threatens to annihilate Israel.

7) Iran is a leading denier of the Holocaust, where 6 million Jews were murdered just 70 years ago. 


THE WORLD’S LEADING SPONSOR OF TERRORISM AND HUMAN RIGHTS ABUSES:


8) Iran is the leading state sponsor of terrorism worldwide.

9) Iran is the worst human rights offender in the world today.


ONGOING DEFIANCE OF THE WORLD ON NUCLEAR PROLIFERATION ACTIVITIES:


10) Iran continues to hide their dangerous nuclear activites from International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), even as they profess cooperation, seek a lifting of sanctions and legitimacy for their nuke program. 


(All opinions my own)


(Source Photo: here with attribution to MEMRI via Fox News)

Sifting Through The Beef Stew

Beef

Many of the negative nellies who either didn’t attend PM Netanyahu’s critical speech to Congress or who were simply circling the wagons came across pretty darn pathetic yesterday.


A smidgon of their very shakey arguments:


1) THIS IS POLITICAL, PERSONAL, MACHO, DISRESPECTFUL, CONDESCENDING, AND MADE ME CRY


FALSE. Actually, with great alarm and dismay, we have been watching for many months, the name-calling and discrediting coming right here from bipartisan Washington…this, rather than supporting the only true democracy, friend, and ally in the middle east. For the Jewish people, this is a mater of survival from genocide, plain and simple–and only 70 years after the Holocaust.


2) THIS IS TO CHANGE THE ELECTION


FALSE. This was at the invitation of Congress to come speak, and at its timetable. The timing does not necessarily help or hurt the PM’s election chances; these are matters for individual voters at the polls to decide.


3) THERE’S NO ALTERNATIVES


FALSE. The alternative is plain, simple, and common sense–keep the sanctions in place and the pressure on Iran, and NOT settle for a deal that proflierates dangerous nukes to a threatening Iranian regime. Those advocating otherwise will find themselves on the wrong side of the historical nuclear aftermath…won’t that leave them a wonderful legacy!


4) WE CAN SURVEIL AND VERIFY ALL NUCLEAR ACTIVITIES


FALSE. The IAEA has repeatedly declared that they have NOT been able to verify Iran’s nuclear activies or the facilities used to build and house them. Moreover, repeated agreements with North Korea turned out to be unverifiable and ended up in their attaining dangerous nuclear weapons that we are still contending with.


5) NO DEAL WILL BE ACCEPTABLE


FALSE. A (very) bad deal is not acceptable. A deal that KEEPS nukes–weapons of mass destruction–out of the hands of the world’s premier sponsor of terrorism and human rights abuses–Iran–for an phased-in easing of sanctions is a good deal.


6) YOU CAN’T STOP USE OF NUCLEAR KNOWLEDGE


FALSE. You can deny Iran the infrastructure and legitimacy to use that knowledge, period. Maybe you can’t put it back in the can, but you can take away the can, shaped like an ICBM, itself.


7) WRONG ON IRAQ AND WRONG AGAIN


FALSE.  When the world was passive in the face of nuclear proliferation in Iraq, Israel was spot on when it destroyed their nearly completed nuclear reactor in 1981. Unfortunately, we were wrong about Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction capability as reported by the Presidential Commission that investigated this post the 2003 invasion of Iraq. 


8) NOTHING NEW HERE


FALSE. PM Netanyahu made clear that this is NOT partisan, that he has the highest respect for the President(cy), that he is most grateful to America, that our bounds are unbreakable, that the enemy (IRAN) of our enemy (ISIS) is not our friend (both seeking radical dominion over the middle east and globally), and that proliferation of nuclear weapons of mass destruction is not acceptable–now or in ten years. And maybe most inspiringly and underpinning many of our common bonds and values is that there is a picture of Moses over the door of Capital!  ;-)


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Please Don’t Shoot Our Ally

Don't Shoot

So it is incredible how backward our current political situation is.


Get this…


When Israel was ready this past year to take out the Iran Nukes, who stopped them?


No, not the Iranian Revolutionary Guard.


No, not any of the other Arab states or terror groups.


No, not Russia.


But rather, our President is reported to have threatened to literally “shoot down Israeli fighter jets” (those of our “Major Strategic Ally”) if they attempted to take out Iran’s nuclear facilities. 


This at the same time that he is desperately seeking an agreement with Axis of Evil, Iran, who continues to threaten Israel and what Iran calls, “The Great Satan,” America. 


While these “negotiations” are going into the home stretch (with one extension after another)…


– Iran destroyed a mock Nimitz class U.S. aircraft carrier in a missile attack, just last week. 


– A senior Iranian cleric threatened our executive branch and vowed to “raise the flag of Islam over the White House.


– In Iran,”Obama is being hung in effigy and the U.S. flag being burnt in Tehran.”


Are these the actions of a nation that the U.S. can trust to make an agreement with on nuclear weapons of mass destruction OR is this a deal with the devil?


As one Arab official stated: “We prefer a collapse of the diplomatic process to a bad deal.” 


Why is this administration turning on Israel and our Arab allies and desperately pursuing a deal, “making ever more concessions” to the ever dangerous Iranian regime. 


As Putin is alleged to have had Russian opposition leader, Boris Nemtsov killed last week, one has to wonder what is going on in our own backyard here in America, with worse yet, purported threats to shoot at our ally Israel. 


G-d should give our leaders the wisdom to discern our allies from our foes, to treat them accordingly, and to secure a genuine peace with security. 


(Source Photo: here with attribution to Mike Licht)

Reform The Movement

Hamas_Children

So was very glad to read this week about a top Sunni cleric who called for educational reform to combat “extremist violence.”


Sheik Ahmend al-Tayeb, a grand imam in Cairo said “corrupt interpretations” of the Koran and of Muhammad was leading to a rise of Middle East-based terrorism. 


This to hopefully stem the flow of what is now being reported as 20,000 foreign fighters flocking to join ISIS


What is amazing here is that good Muslim people are recognizing the problem with radicalization, extremism, and violence and are speaking out. 


Yet, many of our own leaders in the Western world still refuse to say the dirty words “Islamic terrorism.”


The President saying instead: “No religion is responsible for terrorism–people are responsible for violence and terrorism.


So perhaps, according to this “logic,” no movement is responsible for what their people do–only the individuals are?


And therefore, accordingly, the Nazis would not be responsible for the Holocaust, nor America for Slavery, nor Communism for political purges, oppression, and violation of human rights, etc. etc. 


…in which case, there would be no apologies, no regrets, no reparations, no museums, no memorials, nothing–because this was just some individuals doing some bad things and those individuals are may no longer even be here with us. 


Doesn’t this ignore the very basic and fundamental fact that when the masses follow a movements’ (genuine or distorted) ideological teachings of hatred, racism, and discrimination, and the people act nefariously on this, then does not the movement itself hold some responsibility for the murderous and evil actions committed based on their doctrine?


The Sheik who denounced terror and called for changes to the education in the Muslim community is recognizing what apparently many of our own leaders refuse to, which is that they–and we–are responsible for what is taught and tolerated in our communities. 


As Peggy Noonan recently wrote, “The reality is that the Islamic State is…very Islamic.


Currently, we are fighting a war on radical Islamic terrorism…whether that terror is committed on Charlie Hebdo, a Jewish grocery store, or the World Trade Centers. 


That does not mean that tomorrow, we are not fighting against some other movement’s treachery. 


This is why good people everywhere must stand up and speak out when they see religions, governments, institutions, or other movements preach and teach lies, hatred, and terror. 


Bad (or hijacked good) movements drive bad actors…so we must not only go after the bad guys, but also hold the movements themselves to account.


We must demand that the lies and distortions be called out for what they are and that truth and virtue be held up in its place. ;-)


(Source Photo: here with attribution to Front Page Magazine)

Discuss And Work Together, Respectfully

Nuke cloud (2)

Everyone and their brother seems to be jumping on board to hit on Netanyahu, the Prime Minister of our “Major Strategic Ally” and friend, Israel. 


This after Netanyahu accepted an invitation from the United States Congress to speak about Iranian nukes threatening the State of Israel, the region, and the Western world. 


1) Iran, Israel and Arab Allies:


Truly, can anyone blame Israel and our Arab allies of being distressed that we are disavowing our 2011 commitment to them, as President Obama stated:


“You also see our commitment to our shared security in our…there be no doubt: America is determined to prevent Iran from getting a nuclear weapon…My policy is prevention of Iran obtaining nuclear weapons.”


Now we have as reported gone from preventing Iran on obtaining nuclear weapons to instead a possible agreement that still leaves thousands of Iran’s nuclear centerfuges spinning and “sunsets” as early as 2025!


This is a lopsided turning of the tables on Israel and of our Arab allies for reapproachment with Axis of Evil, Iran


2) Russia and Ukraine:


But not alone are our Middle East allies in feeling abandoned by us, as we made security guarantees also to Ukraine in the Budapest Memorandum of 1994 that specifically committed the U.S., U.K. and Russia to:


“Respect the independence and sovereignty and existing border of Ukraine [and to] refrain from the threat or use of force.”


Well so much for that as Crimea has now been annexed by Russia and battling rages across eastern Ukraine by Russian-supported separatists, despite a blantant violation of a truce recently brokered by France and Germany.


3) Poland and Czech Republic


Yet once again, with Poland and the Czech republic (members of NATA), we commited ourselves to building a missle shield only then to back away and seemingly abandon them


“In one of the biggest national security reversals of his young presidency, Mr. Obama cancelled…plans to station a radar facility [and]…ground-based interceptors.”


Questions:


Why are we continually turning on longtime friends and allies and embracing enemies sworn to our destruction?


What do our commitments mean to anyone anymore and why shouldn’t our shunted allies speak out, especially when it is their countries that are being placed in jeopardy?


Disrespect and Freedom of Speech:


What is also amazing is how low we have gone in our interactions such that we no longer discuss and disagree respectfully, but instead resort now to withholding security information, disgraceful name-calling (e.g. “Chickenshit”), discrediting, and even seeking to silence opposing views!


What has happened to our dearly held and constitutional rights and values for democracy, free speech, including openly debating issues and respecting differences of opinion?


Institutional Anti-Semitism:


Interesting also is how big and tough we are being on little Israel (population 8 million and about the size of the 5th smallest U.S. state of New Jersey)…


While simultaneously many seem to be proverbially (excuse the language) peeing their pants in front of the newly aggressive “Big Bear,” Russia


What is more important when it comes to the dangers of a Iran with nuclear WMD–a longtime friend and ally Israel that is facing a potentially existential threat just 70 years after the Holocaust or getting an historical “award” for making an agreement (and a potentially bad one at that) with Iran?


Conclusion:


Behavior unbecoming, includes serially breaking commitments, silencing the opposition (uh, against our Constituion), name-calling and bullying, and endangering longtime allies and friend–this is not leadership and does not leave anyone a desired legacy. 


Let’s openly and freely discuss and work together respectfully in true friendship and partnership, and get a good deal that safeguards the democracies of the United States and Israel. ;-)


(All Opinions my own.)


(Source Photo: here with attribution to blueforce4116)